Cost: £ – can definitely be done on a budget
Rating: 6/10 – a pretty, lively city
Trip length: 1/2 nights is probably all you need
We hopped on a 4 and a half hour long train from London to Edinburgh, armed with treats and wine. We booked a few months in advance so the return ticket only cost us £62.50 each. You can fly to Edinburgh too but I’d suggest the train as it’s relatively hassle free!
We stayed in a gorgeous AirBnb right by Arthur’s Seat and in the heart of the city. It was very clean, comfortable and brilliantly located for exploring Edinburgh. For 2 nights between 6 of us it cost £57 per person!
Currency in Scotland is the GBP Pound. If you’re travelling from overseas check the conversion rate before you go.
What we did…
1 – Arthur’s Seat
Arthur’s Seat is the main peak of the group of hills in Edinburgh, situated within Holyrood Park.
Our AirBnb was literally at the bottom of Arthur’s Seat so it wasn’t too hard to find. It’s not a massively difficult walk – you’ll be up at the highest point in about 15 mins. That being said, it was rainy and slippery when we were there so it’s worth making the journey in some sturdy shoes to avoid injury!
We walked up to the top first thing in the morning and so our view was relatively unspoilt by tourists. There were a lot of people walking up as we were walking back down so I can imagine it getting busy later in the day.
2 – Edinburgh Castle
A very popular tourist attraction, Edinburgh Castle is a historic fortress which dominates the skyline of the city of Edinburgh. It’s situated at the end of the Royal Mile.
There were amazing views of Edinburgh from the castle too. You can buy tickets for a guided tour online. It wasn’t massively crowded when we were there but I’ve read online that it can get incredibly busy!
3 – The Royal Mile
The Royal Mile is the stretch of road connecting Edinburgh Castle with Holyrood Palace (which is the Queen’s residence in Scotland). The architecture is gorgeous and there are lots of shops to browse in. There are many tourist attractions too!
- Princes Street – the main shopping street
- St. Giles Cathedral – an impressive, Gothic cathedral
- Museum of Scotland – Scottish history museum
- Scott Monument – Victorian Gothic monument to Scottish author Sir Walter Scott
- Scottish National Gallery – national art gallery
A cute little market we stumbled upon – a Sunday market selling local produce. We indulged in lots of delicious food here.
Deep-fried Mars bar!!
We couldn’t leave Scotland before we tried one! A deep-fried Mars bar is a Scottish dessert where they fry a Mars bar in batter used in fish and chip shops! However, everywhere seemed to be closed on a Sunday and we couldn’t find a fish and chip shop to buy one in… so we bought a Mars bar from a corner store and took it to a pub where they fried it for us…
I doubt the batter they used in the pub was the same as in a fish and chip shop because our deep-fried mars bar was DISGUSTING! I took 1 small bite and felt sick for the entire day! Make sure you try a legit deep-fried Mars bar and not a DIY one.
The closest we went to this Scottish delicacy was in our fry-up… and I couldn’t actually bring myself to eat it! Here’s the Wikipedia description:
‘Haggis is a savoury pudding containing sheep’s pluck (heart, liver, and lungs); minced with onion, oatmeal, suet, spices, and salt, mixed with stock, traditionally encased in the animal’s stomach though now often in an artificial casing instead.’
We had an amazing dinner in a little restaurant called Under the Stairs! The menu is simple yet sophisticated and the atmosphere in the restaurant is very buzzy. If you want to go to a great cocktail bar, head to the Dragonfly (5 min walk from Under the Stairs).
We only spend £100 per person when we were there so it can definitely be done on a budget. (Having said that, we didn’t go out out; we bought some wine and snacks for the AirBnb so chilled there on the first night and after dinner on the second night).
We had an amazing time in Edinburgh – it’s full of history, there’s lots to see / do, and the locals are warm and welcoming. I really want to go back during the Edinburgh Fringe as I hear it’s a fantastic time to visit.
Cost per person for 2 nights (2 days)
Train – £62.50
Accommodation – £57
Spend – £100
Total – £219.50